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There are at least two bands named 'Astra':
1) American psych/prog rock
2) Italian progressive metal
1) Like a heavy hammer onto anvil, down from Ether's starry meadows, the sounds of ASTRA are engulfing this planet Earth. With their heads floating in the mist of Europe's original psychedelic and progressive eras, the boys formed under the winter sun of San Diego, CA in the year 2001 as Silver Sunshine. They released their SDMA-nominated, eponymous debut album in 2004 on Empyrean Records, followed by "A Small Pocket of Pure Spirit"(also nominated) - their evolved EP in 2005 on the same label. With the departure of original Silver Sunshine drummer Iain Andrew Sclater, and the joining of new drummer/multi-instrumentalist David Hurley in 2006, their sound and direction have evolved and grown. They have decided to change their name along with their sound and lineup and are now known as ASTRA. With the recent joining of guitar wizard/multi-instrumentalist Brian Ellis, the planets have aligned and ASTRA is now complete. They've toured the west coast of the U.S. twice and shared the stage with many friends like: Dungen, Winter Flowers, Earthless, Jennifer Gentle, Jana Hunter, Bigelf, Saint Etienne, Persephone's Bees, Entrance, Titan, The Black Keys, The Sunshine Fix, All Night Radio, Green Milk From the Planet Orange and DMBQ to name a few. So what's on the horizon for ASTRA? Richard Vaughan (guitar/mellotron/vocals), Conor Riley (guitar/mellotron/arp odyssey/organ/vocals), Stuart Sclater (bass), David Hurley (drums/flute/various noisemakers) and Brian Ellis (guitar, moog) are curently recording their debut full length album entitled: The Weirding, for Rise Above Records to be released in March of 2009.
2) Italian progressive metal band Astra originally started as a Dream Theater cover band, winning the first Italian Official Dream Theater Tribute Band Contest in 2002. At the end of 2005 they began recording their debut album "About Me: Through Life and Beyond", which was released in August 2006. Their second album "From Within" was released February 2009.
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